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Learning Ruby by Michael Fitzgerald

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Why Rails?

Does the world really need another web app framework? Don't we already have things like Apache Struts (http://struts.apache.org), Apache Cocoon (http://cocoon.apache.org), Horde (http://www.horde.org), Maypole (http://maypole.perl.org), Tapestry (http://jakarta.apache.org/tapestry), WebSphere (http://www.ibm.com/websphere), and a whole bunch of others?

Yes, we do have all those, but Rails is different. It just works. It is intelligently designed, and the deeper you dig, the more you'll like. Not that you won't find some flaws. Problems exist, just as they do in Ruby, but they are not the glaring, odious kinds of horrors that send you flailing from your cubicle. They are minor annoyances compared to the overall strength of Rails. So I don't worry about them much, and neither should you.

Another good thing is that people you can trust—people like Dave Thomas (http://blogs.pragprog.com/cgi-bin/pragdave.cgi), Mike Clark (http://clarkware.com/cgi/blosxom), Andy Hunt (http://toolshed.com/blog), Chad Fowler (http://www.chadfowler.com), and James Duncan Davidson (http://www.duncandavidson.com), among many others—have given Rails everything from a thorough thrashing to glowing, hard-won reviews. None of these folks just rolled off the turnip truck. Davidson, the creator of Apache Java apps Tomcat and Ant, has said, "Rails is the most well thought-out web development framework I've ever used . . . . Nobody has done it like this before." Tim O'Reilly has called it "a breakthrough ...

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